Jurgen shares his thoughts on connected devices and the evolution of connected ecosystems 

“Connected devices are crucial for extracting more data on customer context and behaviour


Jurgen Wildvank, Managing Director, NN SparkLab at Nationale-Nederlanden

Hear from Jurgen Wildvank in this exclusive interview as he discusses the opportunities for insurers to develop value-added services, the importance of monetising new data and how he sees the connected ecosystems evolving in the next few years.

How can connected devices be better integrated into insurance offerings and what are the steps required to achieve this?

J.W. Customers are expecting a more seamless experience, so insurance offerings and connected devices need to be seamlessly integrated as well. Current offerings are mostly “marketing” – such as providing discounts on the connected services and insurance pieces. But below that are two separate propositions. That works for the early adopters, but for the bigger mass market, it needs to be one fully integrated service that has clear benefits for the client and provides an easy and simple experience. As connected technologies are getting better and better from a user experience perspective, this opens up new opportunities for a real seamless experience offer.

What opportunities will there be for insurers to develop value-added services in the wider connected ecosystem?

J.W. Insurers are well positioned to bring value-added services to the ecosystem coming either from enhanced data insights, such as adding data on likelihood of flooding for to leak detection services or by bringing the strong repair networks they have in place for claims to use for new preventive services and installation support.

To what extent is it crucial for insurers to monetise new data from connected devices? What steps must be taken to do this?

J.W. Understanding the contextual and behavioural insights taken from customer data will be the key differentiating factors for insurers in the future. This is a new way of underwriting and pricing and connected devices are crucial for extracting more data on customer context and behaviour, and it will define the future data infrastructure of insurers. Insurers typically have a good starting position on interpreting this data and extracting the right risk factors and behaviours to enhance pricing or develop more relevant market propositions for customers.

How do you see connected ecosystems evolving in the next few years? What role do you expect insurers to play?

J.W. As more and more devices and services are getting connected, we will see a wider variety in connected ecosystems. Depending on the customer need and usage insurers can/ will either take a supporting role in the ecosystems or take a more direct role in the ecosystem. Ecosystems that will arise around topics like mobility, security or vitality are closer to insurers’ core business than ecosystems around comfort or convenience for example. Customers will define the role of each player in the ecosystem, as they will be key in valuing the importance of specific services within the ecosystem.

How will developments in connected ecosystems change the relationships between insurers and other industries?

J.W. Insures will need to partner up more and more with other industries. Connected ecosystems heavily rely on technical infrastructure, devices, and software and data algorithms, typically not elements that insurers are leading in. Partnering up with companies that do have these skills or have the access to the customer engagement will be crucial for insurers to play a relevant role in the ecosystems of tomorrow.